How to Find the Perfect Name for Your Business

Finding the perfect name for your business is a key part that all entrepreneurs should focus on when they are launching a brand or company. It is typically the first aspect of the business that potential customers will interact with. A name will help people learn about your business as well as your mission and values. It should attract people to your start-up and summarise your brand’s identity.
New idea
Though naming can be a challenge, it shouldn’t have to feel like walking off the edge of a cliff while blindfolded. With the three stages described below, you can organise your ideas and find the best name for your unique business.

Stage 1: Mission & Vision

 

Outline your brand

Start by looking at existing business names that you think are particularly effective for your brand; this step will help you when it comes time for you to brainstorm names.  Write a list of 8-10 of your favourite names, then pick them apart. Jot down a couple of notes about what you like about the name and why it works for that specific brand. Analysing your favourite names can give some helpful direction to your naming journey.

 

Look ahead to the future

A brand covers many aspects including your business name, logo, mission, and values; you need to convey what your business is all about and root it in one central name.
Try to summarise your company’s mission and vision in a couple of short project statements like these examples:

  • We need a name that captures our joyful, upbeat approach to selling soda.
  • We need a name that establishes us as a unique, hipster brand.
  • We need a name that hints at our environmentally-friendly business practices.

Get started by writing down a couple of project statements for your own business.

Stage 2: Get Creative

 

Gather some names

Now, it’s time for the most enjoyable part of this process. Write down each possible name you can think of that might work with the unique brand you are creating. Names generally come in 5 different styles: modern, descriptive, classic, emotional, and fun. Brainstorm business names by writing down a few examples for every type on this list. This can help you see what you’re looking for in a brand name. The more names you have to work with, the better final name you will come up with.

 

Capture your audience’s attention

You want to choose a name that will capture the attention of your target audience. Avoid anything that could be potentially offensive, or words that are awkward to say and spell, as people probably will not remember it.
Audience testing is a quick and simple way to double check that your name will perform well with your intended target demographic.

 

Narrow your list

Now that you have collected a number of different name ideas, start crossing off the names that don’t work for your brand until you have only five or six names left. This is a great time for you to also collect some name opinions from your friends, family, or target audience members.

Stage 3: Check Your Boxes

 

Assess your trade mark risk

Before you finally decide on a name, you will need to check that it isn’t already used by a similar business. You can run a quick trade mark check at  GOV.UK – Search for Trademark. If your name is too similar to another business offering similar services, you could get into trouble with trademark law. Make sure that you are proactive to avoid any future hassle and expense.

 

 

UK Trade Marks

A trade mark provides a product/brand/organisation with an identity which cannot be imitated by its competitors. ‘A trade mark can be a name, word, phrase, logo, symbol, design, image, sound, shape, signature or any combination of these elements.’

United Kingdom trade mark law – Wikipedia

 

 

 

Conclusion

Brainstorming a uniquely effective name for your brand can feel like a daunting task. So much of your success rests upon your name. It should summarise your brand’s identity and connect you to your target audience.

You might think that all the top names are already in use, or that you don’t have any good ideas, but the perfect name for your business is out there, just waiting for you to find it.

 

Find out more:

Starting or Running a Business – Useful Resources
Whether you’re an entrepreneur, freelancer, consultant, franchisee or retailer, you’ll find some valuable resources here: online tips & tools, practical help & advice, incubator & accelerator programmes, courses, events & more

 

Grant Polacheck - contributor

About the Author

Grant Polachek is the Director of Marketing at Inc 500 company Squadhelp, the world’s #1 naming platform, with nearly 20,000 customers, from the smallest start-ups across the globe to the largest corporations. Get inspired by exploring these winning names.

 

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